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back to article Tories choose sub-prime beard for maths post

The Tory party has chosen ex-Countdown presenter and secured loan advertiser Carol Vorderman to provide a public face for the party's "Maths Taskforce". Vorderman spent nine years shilling for FirstPlus - which offered loans to those with poor credit records. Barclays Bank - which owned FirstPlus - was looking for a buyer for …

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Ocean finance

I am more of an Ocean Finance man, where you can obtain a yacht and a better looking bird than Vorderman by dialing their quick and easy number.

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IT Angle

The new Conservative Slogan

Do you have lots of ideas on various matters? Thinking too hard about world and domestic issues become a serious strain on your mind? Why not take all those unwieldy opinions and consolidate them into one convenient, manageable Tory vote! Call First Toff now and see how much you can save!

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Maybe Vorderman is the right person?

To explain to all those new suckers coming through the system why they should never, ever, sign up for any financial product punted by a c-list celeb on daytime television and should stick to watching Kilroy or whatever it is now....

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Joke

Re: Ocean finance

There's a drawback there too. I'm not sure that it's worth the encounter with the Ugly Stick that they seem to insist all their clients go through.

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Cambridge Grad...

... with three 3rds. She should be ashamed of herself for the tat and misery she's peddled over the years, and is a perfect fit for Cameron's Tories.

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@the power of the D list celebrity

This could catch on,

We could have Patrick Stewart in charge of Britain's Space Program.

Some bloke off casualty as the new advisor on health.

And of course Del Boy as the new chancellor of the exchequer

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Experts exchange!

I imagine all the real educationalist experts are chuffed to bits at this! But - calm down, dear - we all know she there simply 'cos her "celebrity" name will guarantee headline Dr. Wafflenumber from Toffbridge University never could :-\

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"facebook .... without maths" !!!

Riiiight, so how many mathematicians does Facebook have, squirreled away in head office performing research into differential calculus?

Yes, there are libraries of code at Facebook, based on mathematical algorithms. However even the newest (encryption) of these algorithms is years old and only took a few people out of the entire population of the planet to devise, develop and debug. Further, none of them are - or ever were - employed by Facebook.

I have a sneaking suspicion that what this guy is really talking about is basic arithmetic - adding-up and suchlike. Which also tells us that he doesn't actually know what mathematics is, so doesn't exactly instill much faith in his pontifications.

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Stop

Nice to know the tories take the issue seriously.....

.. god forbid they should pander to the tabloid/mail readers with a face they know over one that has experience and geniune commitment.

Oh.. they chose Vorderman... 3rd rate, just like her degree.

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Maths expert?

Carol Vorderman has shown something of a talent for money making from the gullible. As well as those glib ads about getting yourself deeper into debt, she has a line in fashionable detox diets (they probably, unlike the loans, won't do you any harm, but the science bit is a joke).

Anyway, this appointment yet again shows the vacuous nature of much of politics and public debate. A good looking, personable inidividual with some skill at mental arithmetic trumps somebody who actually works in the field of mathematics.

Anyway, at least they aren't using her for promoting education in English literature. Recall how she explained away her failure to answer a simple question about 12th Night by pointing out it was Shakespeare's fault for being as "dull as ditchwater", although that didn't stop Dorling Kindersley publishin a book called "English Made Easy" under her name.

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Number crunching

Take the 1 and add the 0 and the another 0 and another 0 and multiply by the 10 and you have her payback for doing this job.

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Political thinking.

Not very surprising to see that a chap whose only slightly successful job was in PR (he also was econonic adviser to Norman Lamont, so best keep him away from the Treasury) thinks we can solve skills shortages with a bit of celebrity gloss.

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Tim

@ Martin

Del Boy as the new chancellor of the exchequer? By this time next year we'd all be millionaires.

Though frankly it would be hard for him to do a worse job than AD (hasn't that VAT cut refreshed the economy a treat?). Sad to see the Tories are scraping the barrel of cheap PR too, it's a shame that Gordon doesn't have a decent opposition. Could someone get a larger & more united party behind Nick Clegg maybe?

Tim#3

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Anonymous Coward

it's all part of the plan

Get the chav scum in more debt to the newly nationalised banks and we are right back to the feudal system. I rather fancy a nice indentured servant.

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Is this an omen of the next Tory government?

Or would the Tories just rather za nu labour retained their sclerotic grip on the levers of power?

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Boffin

Always a frown, with Gordon Brown

I always thougfht it was Gordon Brown who was the ad-man for Ocean Finance.

"Credit Crunch? No problem - I've Saved the World by bundling up its debts into one easy payment with a loan from Ocean Finance. You - and your children - only have the next fifty years to pay it back. . . ."

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Boffin

There's a difference between ...

... arithmetic and real mathematics. This is a cheap bit of window-dressing to impress the countdown-watching Sun readers who think she's clever.

There again, the 'average' government minister can't grasp the difference between the mean, mode and median ...

Another valium please, Carol ...

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Voderman

isn't that the one who gets all the extra time and still cannot workout the maths problems.

No brunette, it is 3 to the power of 5, divided by the log of 9, floored, duh 110.

I am sure she will make a fine spokesperson for maths, and we all wish her the best of British luck.

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You dont have to be a genius

To suss that the current pack of tossers in clowning street, cant add up.

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Difficult question

I'm ambivalent about this: certainly, the person to head up the taskforce should be at least mildly competent at mathematics, and Carol Vorderman is, not to put too fine a point on it, useless. There is a place for her in such a thing, but not leading it.

However, the country is at war with stupidity, and at the moment, stupidity is winning. Every year, the cohort of students arriving from school is worse than the previous, every year they know less, have fewer ideas, are more accustomed to being told that they are great when in fact they are terrible. I think we could do with every advantage we can get, and this mouthpiece, while vapid, could help.

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Beard!

I'm surprised no one's picked up on the fact that El Reg just called Carol Vorderman a beard. XD

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Anonymous Coward

Vorderman the Celebrity

If Vorderman was truly intelligent then she would balk at the concept of using her celebrity status to pimp loans. She is an average person and her only claim to fame is that she is good at sums on television. Anyone with half a brain can achieve this with some self training on mental calculation.

She feeds of this idea of being a maths genius, and most of the gullible public believe it. Sadly it seems that this extends to politicians.

She should be ashamed of herself.

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MySpace & Facebook...

They probably do have some mathematicians doing algorithmic work, they'll just be called computer scientists rather than mathematicians.

Then again, aren't they both failing to break even because nobody's yet figured out where real revenue is going to arise from to balance their books?

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not that new

Yes maths is important, but outside of pure maths, it is just a tool (in the same way that pure mathematicians learn some programming), and it needs to be taught as part of the subject it applies to. for example, you couldn't teach physics or computing (couldn't teach it well anyway) without knowing a lot of maths.

when i was in college, the physics group was split into those who also did maths, and those who didn't, as those who didn't needed to be taught differently, but we all took the same exams at the end!!

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Boffin

Vorderman set theory:

Annoying and vaguely scientific: 10%

Annoying and not even vaguely scientific: 90%

Not annoying and vaguely scientific: Undefined

Not annoying and not even vaguely scientific: Oh puleeaaasse, you're 'aving a larf incha!

Which part of the Carol diagram (more appropriate spelling here to save Mr Dodgson's blushes) do you think the Maths gimmick erm Taskforce's work is going to fit into?

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